Obama responds to Newtown football coach’s message on a whiteboard

The message Newtown football coach Steve George and teacher Bob Pattison left on their classroom whiteboard Saturday night was simple and direct.

It could have been a message to George’s players in a Newtown locker room.

This one was for the President of the United States.

President Barack Obama was on his way to Newtown High School Sunday night to address a packed auditorium of families and community leaders gathered to mourn the shooting deaths of 20 children and six teachers at nearby Sandy Hook Elementary School.

It was a simple, thank you note.

And it got a simple, powerful, reply.

George, a Newtown graduate and the football coach since 2007, Tweeted a picture of it just an hour or so after the President left town. It was re-Tweeted several hundred times within a half hour.

George and Pattison wrote:

“Dear President Obama,

“The Newtown community is so thankful that you are coming to help us heal. In times of adversity it is reassuring to know that we have a strong leader to help us recover.

-Steve George, teacher/football coach
-Bobby Pattison, teacher

Obama’s reply:

You’re in our thoughts and prayers.
-Barack Obama

Obama met the families of the children and teachers killed in the Sandy Hook shooting and later addressed the auditorium with an 18-minute speech broadcast around the world.

Sean Patrick Bowley